Game: Tetra’s Escape
Developer: ABX Games
Publisher: Ratalaika Games
Age Rating: 3+ (UK & EU) | E (US)
Regular Price: £4.99 | €4,99| $4.99
Release Date: 10th August 2018
(The game is also available on Android, Steam, Xbox One, PS4, PS Vita)
Overall Feeling: I like it!
Review Code generously provided by Ratalaika
The Tetras lived a happy peaceful life; until a giant portal appeared out of no where, sucking them all up and spoiling their morning walk – such a rude portal! Help the Tetras escape the worlds they have landed in; use their shape shifting abilities to get to the portals that lead back to their homeland.
Gameplay & Controls
Tetra’s Escape consists of 64 puzzles/levels over 8 worlds. Each world has their own theme/colour scheme, and as you progress; you are introduced to new types of Tetras, environment hazards and even gravity inversers (they flip the gravity orientation for a Tetra).
The game introduces different elements of play as you progress, such as lava on some levels, then gravity inversers in later ones. Thankfully, there aren’t too many elements together in one level. The game keeps things simplistic while still posing a bit of a challenge.
The difficulty only increases slightly and gradually as you progress. The player is introduced to new elements of play at a steady pace; so you don’t get bombarded by too many at once. The steady pace gives the game a rather nice and relaxed feeling while playing – always good to have relaxing games to play. 🙂
The puzzle element comes from turning the Tetras into shapes (like the ones you find in Tetris), to help at least one Tetra make it’s way to a portal. Sometimes it has to be a specific colour of Tetra, but all the Tetras in the level get sucked up and sent to their homeland when one makes it to the portal (success!). 😀
Once a Tetra has turned into a Tetromino though, they typically cannot turn back to normal (except on certain levels). Working out which Tetromino shape to use can be a case of trial and error.
There are also stars for the player to collect on each level. Upon collecting the three stars, a trophy appears for the player to also collect. They bring an (optional) extra challenge to the levels and some can be very tricky to obtain (especially on later levels). Collecting them offers a bit of replay value if you don’t pick them up on the first go through.
There isn’t any multiplayer or online modes for Tetra’s Escape; it is strictly offline and single player. However, it doesn’t stop the player from involving family and friends to try and work out what to do in a level – another person may think of a way that you hadn’t thought of before.
Joy cons or a pro controller can be used, but no touch screen controls. Sure, it’s not necessary to have touch controls in a game, but I feel they would have been a great alternative here.
Graphics, Designs & Soundtrack
Tetra’s Escape has a nice, cheery but simplistic graphical style. Many of the levels are rather vibrant in colour and overall work really well. As it is a puzzle game; simplicity is certainly a good thing – less distractions allow you to be focused on the puzzle at hand.
The levels are rather minimalist, simplistic and short which helps keep the game casual and not overly complicated – good for short bursts of playing and works great with the graphical approach.
The soundtrack works great for the game; it’s nice and cheery with a bit of a bounce to it that may make some bop along to it at times – keeps the game lighthearted and fun! 😀
They say that Tetra’s Escape has “7 hours worth of content”, but that really does depend on the person playing and whether they go for 100%. My overall completion percentage was 88.28% with (just over) 3 hours playtime (that’s with all levels played through). I can’t see it taking 7 hours to reach 100%; perhaps all those hours of playing Tetris prepared me well for helping the Tetras. 😀
Surprisingly, version 1.0.0 of the game takes quite awhile to load; once it gets to the ABX Games intro screen, it often takes nearly a minute to load beyond that point. When there is a still image on screen for quite awhile, you can’t help but start wondering if the game has crashed. Not sure what causes it to take that long to load (perhaps it’s just the SD card I use), but hopefully a patch will sort that in the future.
£4.99 is (just about) okay for what the game offers. It is £3.99 on Steam but Tetra’s Escape is much better suited for a handheld device due to the short nature of the levels. If your phone is capable of playing it; seems to be cheapest on there and it allows you to play certain levels for free (but it has adverts popping up).
The mobile version gives you the option of buying the full game without adverts, or paying a little less and having the full game with adverts. I don’t know anyone that would pay money for a game with adverts, but yeah, if you want to save a few more pennies and don’t mind adverts then happy days. 😀
I really enjoyed Tetra’s Escape; found the relaxed, cheery nature of the game refreshing and fun. I stayed glued to the game for an hour at a time; probably wasn’t the best idea when you take into account the overall length of the game – shorter bursts would have been better!
Considering how laid back and casual the game plays out; touch screen controls would have been a great option, more so when the mobile version has touch screen controls already. It would have been a nice change of pace to tap/swipe the Tetra to move them rather than using joy cons or a pro controller – touch controls would have suited it better for gaming with a cuppa! 😀
I think more levels would have been brilliant: when I had finished the last level I was left wanting more! Extra levels would make it feel more worth while if paying £4.99 for the game. Perhaps even bonus levels for collecting a number trophies (an extra incentive then for players to collect them)?
Tetra’s Escape; a colourful and cheerful puzzle game, that’s not overly difficult. It will still get you to sit and think for awhile – especially on some later levels and for the trophies! It’s rather short overall, but if you are looking for a light hearted puzzle game to play in short bursts; I certainly recommend trying Tetra’s Escape! 😀